Life on Mars? ... and other questions

John
John Gushue
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.

If you're a David Bowie fan, you probably know the tune "Life on Mars?" a punctuated song that came to mind as I heard a newscast Monday morning about the landing the night before of the Phoenix craft on the so-called red planet.

Phoenix Mars Landing

http://phoenix.lpl.arizona.edu/

Hosted by the University of Arizona, which became the first university to ever sponsor a space mission, this site has a bit of nerdy giddiness to it.

Surf's up - If you're a David Bowie fan, you probably know the tune "Life on Mars?" a punctuated song that came to mind as I heard a newscast Monday morning about the landing the night before of the Phoenix craft on the so-called red planet.

Phoenix Mars Landing

http://phoenix.lpl.arizona.edu/

Hosted by the University of Arizona, which became the first university to ever sponsor a space mission, this site has a bit of nerdy giddiness to it.

You can read blogs posted by excited collaborators, read up on how the mission worked, and (hopefully by the time you're reading this) download a weather widget, which can keep your desktop continually updated with the Martians, as it were. The kids section may appeal to the science-club crowd.

NASA: Phoenix

www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/phoenix/main/

By contrast, the NASA page on Phoenix is much more official looking, and (as you might expect from the agency, which long ago realized that space photos are like gold chips on the Internet) loaded to the brim with visual goodies, including videos. I imagine the horde will only get richer.

If you're visiting NASA for the first time, poke around beyond the Phoenix pages. There's a lot to read, see and hear: look for podcast links, schedules for other missions and some eye-popping visuals.

Elsewhere this week

Terry Fox: Tour of Hope

www.tourofhope.ca/toh/

On Sunday, Betty Fox was in St. John's to officially unveil the fully restored Ford Econoline van that Terry Fox used in 1980 for the history-making Marathon of Hope.

I was surprised how much I recalled of that van, just from TV clips alone. The restored van is heading west; check out the official site for details and its history.

St. John's Farmers' Market

http://stjohnsfarmersmarket.com/

Next week, the St. John's Farmers' Market kicks into gear, working from a new space by the Lions Chalet off Mayor Avenue. I've long envied the markets in other cities (in downtown Halifax, the long-vacant Keith's brewery site has been converted to a vibrant weekend market) and wondered why one hasn't been fostered here. From June 7 until the end of November, a market will draw farmers and other vendors.

Kubrick 2001

www.kubrick2001.com/

In 1968, Stanley Kubrick unveiled "2001: A Space Odyssey," which arguably remains one of the greatest films of all time. Even by today's advances, it remains visually stunning, and just as mystifying as when it stumped audiences four decades ago.

This Flash-based site explains the film's four main sections and their many metaphors. Parts of the animation are clunky, but I liked sitting back and watching the presentation, which if nothing else only made me want to watch the whole thing again.

Biggest Drawing in the World

biggestdrawingintheworld.com/drawing.aspx

Have you ever seen how a GPS readout can resemble a drawing - not necessarily a good or even understandable one, but a sketch nonetheless?

The idea behind this project was not to produce something random, but quite the opposite: to design a drawing by shipping a GPS-equipped suitcase around the world, and then applying the route of its travels with a map of the world. Quite a trip, indeed.

Icon Look

www.iconlook.com/

Looking for icons for a website, a presentation or a document? One option is Icon Look, a search engine just for (yep) icons.

Who knew one needed to exist? Well, maybe it needs some work. I tried out some sample queries, and only one of six produced anything decent.

It was more pleasant browsing through random icons, and I finished my visit wondering why the search results were disappointing.

John Gushue is a news writer for CBCNews.ca in St. John's. E-mail: surf@thetelegram.com. Read past Surf's Up columns and daily updates at his blog: johngushue.typepad.com.

Organizations: NASA, University of Arizona, Lions Chalet

Geographic location: Phoenix, St. John's, Mars Halifax

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page

Comments

Comments